Quick Vita: Michael Tobis

B.Sc.: EE Northwestern U. Tech. Institute, 1976

M.Eng.: Systems/Computer Engineering Carleton U., 1984

Ph.D.: Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences U Wis Madison 1996

Postdocs: Argonne Lab department of Mathematics and Computer Science; University of Chicago department of Geophysical Sciences

Currently: "Scientist/Engineer Associate V" University of Texas Institute of Geophysics. Mostly software engineering in support of Bayesian Stochastic Inversion of coupled earth system models.

Intervening adventures in the private sector: Manager of a web software team at Clotho Advanced Media LLC. Architect of a citywide permit tracking system for the City of Madison. management consultant. Author of a book on management intended for small teams and high-performance small businesses.

Teaching experience: Taught undergraduate and graduate level courses in Computer Science at Carleton University in Ottawa back in the 1980s and recently at Loyola University of Chicago. Interested in teaching, learning, reading, writing, and other forms of persuasion.

Professional Papers

M. Steder, M. Tobis, R. L. Jacob, J. W. Larson and R. T. Pierrehumbert (2007): "Scripting at Run Time in High Performance Computing with PyMCT".
In preparation.

E. Ong, J. W. Larson, B. Norris, R. L. Jacob, M. Tobis and M. Steder (2007): "Multilingual Interfaces for Parallel Coupling in Multiphysics and Multiscale Systems". 2007 International Conference on Computational Science, Beijing, China.

M. Tobis, M.Steder, R. L. Jacob, R. T. Pierrehumbert, J. W. Larson and E. T. Ong (2006): "PyMCT and PyCPL: Refactoring the Community Climate System Model". Submitted to ANZIAM (Australian and New Zealand Industrial and Applied
Mathematics) Journal.

M. Tobis, M. Steder, R. T. Pierrehumbert, R. L. Jacob (2006): Lessons for the Cluster Community from an Experiment in Model Coupling with Python. Presented at 7th Linux Clusters Institute Conference on Clusters, Norman OK. Available at

M. Tobis (2005): PyNSol: A Framework for Interactive Development of High Performance Continuum Models. In A. Deane et al. eds., Parallel Computational Fluid Dynamics 2005: Theory and Appplications. (Proceeedings of the Parallel Computational Fluid Dynamics Conference, College Park MD, May 24-27 2005.)
Elsevier Press 2005 pp 171-178.

M. Tobis (2005): "PyNSol : Objects as Scaffolding". IEEE Computing in Science and Engineering, Vol 7 pp 84-93

D. Archer, G. Eshel, A. Winguth, W. Broecker, R. Pierrehumbert, M. Tobis and R. Jacob (2000): “Atmospheric CO2 Sensitivity to the Biological Pump in the Ocean” Global Biogeochemical Cycles, Vol. 14(4), pp. 1219-1230.

R. Jacob, C. Schafer, I. Foster, M. Tobis and J. Anderson (2001): “Computational Design and Performance of the Fast Ocean Atmosphere Model.” Proc. 2001 International Conference on Computational Science, eds. V. N. Alexandrov, J.J. Dongarra, C. J. K. Tan, Springer-Verlag.

C. Schafer and M. Tobis (1998): “New Technologies for Very Large Empirical Deconpositions of Simulated Climate” 7th International Meeting on Statistical Climatology, Whistler BC Canada.

M. Tobis and J. R. Anderson (1997): “On Slowed Barotropic Dynamics for Efficient Ocean Circulation Modeling” Argonne National Laboratory report MCS-P696-1097

M. Tobis, R. L. Jacob, J. R. Anderson, I. T. Foster and C. M. Schafer: “FOAM: Expanding the Horizons of Climate Modeling” Proceedings of Supercomputing ’97 San Jose CA .

J. R. Anderson and M. Tobis (1992): “High Resolution Simulations of the Global Climate: Initial Results of the Wisconsin Parallel Climate Model Project” Transactions of Third AMS Symposium
on Global Change Studies, Atlanta GA.

J. R. Anderson and M. Tobis (1990): “Long Term Variability and Trends in Intraseasonal Fluctuations of the Tropical Climate” Transactions of First AMS Symposium on Global Change
Studies, Anaheim CA.

D. D. Falconer, A. U. H. Sheikh, E. Eleftheriou, and M. Tobis (1985): “Comparison of Decision Feedback Equalization and Minimum Squared Error Performance on HF Channels”,
IEEE Transactions on Communications 33(5) pp 484-486


Python as a first language

Python for science (3 lectures, visiting lectures for a class)

The five faces of Python


Introduction to Computing (lectures for a class)

Networking with Python (lectures for a class)


Cyberinfrastructure and climate science

FORTRAN must be replaced.

You can find lots of my writings in the sci.environment archives.

I currently am an active participant and moderator in the globalchange google group, which is trying to fill the gap left by final collapse of sci.environment. (Join us!)

I blogabit

Reference Material

Writing NetCDF: an introduction


Managing Multiple Projects - McGraw Hill 2001


Other me-related links




Global Change

In It for the Gold

Pining for the Fjords

UTIG page